Four ways to celebrate Lunar New Year with your kiddo

Red lanterns during Lunar New Year celebrations

It’s time to celebrate! Whether your family is new to the traditions of the Lunar New Year or you’ve been celebrating them your whole life, we’ve got some great activities for you and your little one to ring in the Year of the Tiger.

The Lunar New Year is one of the most important celebrations of the year for East and Southeast Asian cultures. In China, the Lunar New Year celebrations last 15 days until the full moon comes, ending with the Spring Lantern Festival on the final day. In South Korea, the festival is called Seollal and lasts for three days, while Tết Nguyên Đán celebrations last for a week in Vietnam.

Lunar New Year is celebrated with food, family, and friends, with families often sharing their own special traditions to welcome the start of a new year. Here are some ideas to get your little one involved with preparations, activities, and celebrations.

Decorate your house in red

Summon some good luck with red decorations for the Lunar New Year! It’s believed that the color red protects you and your house from bad luck, so spread some good fortune starting with some red construction paper you’ve got lying around the house. The decorations you’ll make from it will brighten up your home, and making them will be a lot of fun for your kiddo!

A perfect activity to make use of all that construction paper is creating some lucky Chinese lanterns. You’ll need some red construction paper, scissors, tape, and some string.

  1. 01
    Fold the paper in half lengthwise to make a long rectangle.
  2. 02
    Then, from the folded side, cut evenly spaced strips, stopping about an inch before the edge of the paper. If your little one isn’t quite ready to cut freehand, you can draw some pencil guidelines before giving them the go-ahead.
  3. 03
    Open up the paper, tape or glue the sides to form a cylinder shape, and tape or glue a strip of construction paper at the top for a handle.
  4. 04
    Make as many as you want, and hang them around your house with string or yarn. You can even string them with some twinkly fairy lights for an extra magical display!

If you and your little one are new to celebrating the Lunar New Year, pull up some images of Chinese lanterns at Spring Festivals online to see them decorating buildings, trees, and inside homes for inspiration.

If you’ve got some red construction paper left over, get creative and find ways to add more splashes of red to your home! Paper chains are another easy and kid-friendly craft to decorate with.

Craft time!

Parents have a knack for finding fun and unique ways to get little ones involved in holiday traditions. Crafts are always a win, as they’re something families can do together and they’re perfect for your little one’s growing mind. While crafting, your kiddo will develop their fine motor skills and rely on their imagination and creativity. You can sprinkle in some fun facts about the importance and history of the holiday you’re celebrating. It’s a great learning opportunity and tons of fun…so grab some supplies, and get crafting!

During Lunar New Year, kids traditionally receive lucky red envelopes with money in them from family members. This money is believed to help transfer good fortune from the elders of the family to the kids. It’s a perfect crafting opportunity to do with your kiddo! Explain to them what the purpose of the red envelope is and get creative with decorations. You can craft one yourself out of red construction paper, or grab some markers and crayons and transform a plain white envelope into your little one’s very own lucky envelope.

Check out these lucky red envelopes by one of our senior graphic designers, Sandra, for inspiration on how you can decorate your own!

Lucky red envelope by Bowl Cut Paper Goods

Lucky red envelope by Bowl Cut Paper Goods

Get cooking!

Let’s face it…sharing food with family and friends is one of the best parts of any holiday. So, hop into the kitchen to make some Lunar New Year treats with your kiddo!

Dumplings are always an excellent choice for Lunar New Year festivities. Traditionally, families would make dumplings together on New Year’s Eve, then eat them after midnight. Making homemade dumplings may take a little finesse, but recruiting your little one’s help will certainly make it a fun (and delicious) family activity.

If you’re looking for a sweet treat to make, what kiddo wouldn’t love to make homemade fortune cookies at home? Work with your child to write fortunes for each other, write them down on a strip of paper, or print and cut them out. Get creative with some silly fortunes that will bring the laughs during your family dinner! You can find the recipe for the fortune cookies here to make a tasty cookie to house your paper fortunes for 2022. They’re sure to be the highlight of the event!

Year of the Tiger Printable

Try our Lunar New Year printable!

For an easy and fun activity for your little one, print out our brand new Year of the Tiger printable pack! Grab some markers and let your little one get creative with several coloring pages to celebrate the Lunar New Year. They’re perfect for adding to the “art gallery” on your fridge!

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